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I need to index my database, but I need to query it while it is indexing, it may take a long time, can I do that?

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I need to enable full-text-search while still querying the database using LIKE operator without using those indexes. – Mohamed Sakher Sawan May 15 '13 at 19:09
This seems like something that would be quite easy to test... – Aaron Bertrand May 15 '13 at 19:16
This question/answer should help. – Kermit May 15 '13 at 19:17

Your comments note that you're specifically talking about full-text indexing.

You can indeed query the database while a full-text index is being created. Full text indexes are created in the background on SQL Server 2005, 2008, and 2008R2.

You can continue to query the database using the LIKE operator, although of course the queries won't be as fast as a full text index, and your database server's performance may be degraded while the index is being created.

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Is the background index build dependent on edition like it is for ONLINE index rebuilds of normal indexes? – JNK May 15 '13 at 20:36
for fulltext, no. All editions are online. however, you will get partial results while the index is being rebuilt. – StrayCatDBA May 16 '13 at 1:30

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